Space Limitations Enhance Video Editing Systems at Middle Tennessee State University. (Applications)

Article excerpt

The Department of Radio-Television and Photography at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro offers one of the country's best state-of-the-art facilities where students can get hands-on experience in all types of electronic media. For example, students can produce programs for a cable television channel, as well as newscasts for a 100,000-watt FM National Public Radio station. And courses, such as Digital Media Communications, include training on a variety of video editing systems.

As the video systems manager for the Department of Radio-Television and Photography, Marc Parrish works with the faculty to instruct students on proper usage of nonlinear video editing systems used to prepare footage for various video production classes; he also maintains these systems.

A nonlinear video editing system enables students to select the order of footage seen in the final cut, regardless of when that footage was actually shot and digitized. By loading their footage into the system's hard drive, students can select the video images, as well as add graphics, audio and text to prepare the footage for a specific running time.

The department has about 11 nonlinear video editing systems from Fast USA, a company that specializes in Windows systems (both hardware and software) for editing electronic media. Eight of these systems include Fast USA's Purple editing systems each with 38 GB of local storage on SCSI hard disk drives. Three of Fast USA's Silver editing systems connect via fibre channel to a storage area network with a half terabyte of space. A 200 MHz-based Windows NT server, which has limited storage space, acts as an Ethernet hub to network these editing systems.

Each semester, between 50 to 70 students use these editing systems for video class projects. Students mostly work in groups of three, with files that can range from 6 GB to 80 GB. Prior to getting these editing systems, Parrish used to give students removable 9 GB hard drives. But with those hard drives students would fill up a drive, causing it to lock. When this happens students are forced to delete their work and start over. Since the new editing systems have resolved those storage issues, Parrish no longer has to give the students removable hard drives. …